I don’t actually believe the radio metaphor of the brain, but I think something like it could account for all of our findings. Its unfalsifiable which is a big no-no in science. But so is the materialist view—it’s also unfalsifiable. We simply don’t know how to reverse engineer consciousness. Saying that the complexity of the brain explains why we are conscious is just an article of faith—it doesn’t explain anything. We don’t know why our brains are associated with conscious experience and nothing else in the universe besides brains seems to be. Maybe rocks have consciousness but no way of showing this. I don’t believe this—but again, I can’t prove its false.
If we acknowledge just how much we don’t know about the conscious mind, perhaps we would be a bit more humble. We have so much confidence in our materialist assumptions (which are assumptions, not facts) that something like free will is denied in principle. Maybe it doesn’t exist, but I don’t really know that. Either way, it doesn’t matter because if free will and consciousness are just an illusion, they are the most seamless illusions ever created. Film maker James Cameron wishes he had special effects that good. So we will go on acting like free willing creatures no matter what. It’s what we're built to do.
This was actually deemed newsworthy? Indeed it was because evolution has come to so dominate our thinking. Conundrums that were well acknowledged ages ago are now revealed as though they are new findings.
This reminds me of Isaac Asimov’s 1958 futuristic short story “The Feeling of Power,” in which a technician named Myron Aub rediscovers arithmetic. Aub’s future world is one dominated by computers which do all the number crunching and people who not only are mathematically-challenged but, more importantly, don’t see the point. What good is math anyway? Today evolution has had a similar effect on our thinking. Just as computers can dull our mathematical skills, evolutionary thought dulls our critical thinking skills.